Archives for March 2014

What Does Your Child Really Need By Rob Flood

In 1979, my father, Larry, was the manager of computer operations for a major oil company. It was the dawn of the computer age and, at that time, computers were just beginning to change from luxuries to necessities. In an industry of high competition, time was just as valuable as money. Then, it happened.

For no apparent reason, the computer room (at that time, computers took up rooms, not laps or desktops) shut down—dead. The computer operators were not able to reboot the computer and could not find any reason for the problem. In an effort to get up and running, Larry called in the A-Team of technicians … no success. They called in the regional technicians … no success. The room was full of operators, managers, and junior and senior technicians all scratching their heads.

The next day, an intern returned from vacation and wondered what the problem was. No one gave him a very thorough answer, convinced he had nothing additional to offer. He strolled around the room to kill time and then asked, “Shouldn’t this button be pushed in?” He pushed it, and the computer rebooted.

The technicians and managers, my father included, had gone to great lengths to address the problems. Yet all the while, the solution was so simple; it’s just that no one stopped to think of the basics.

In the same way, as parents we are so willing to give our children all we think they need. We give them food, clothing, and shelter. We give them entertainment and enrichment. We sacrifice our own hobbies, preferences, and personal interests on their behalf. Most of us would give our own lives to ensure their success and happiness. Yet is it possible that we are missing their most important need?

Corrie ten Boom once wrote, “Is prayer your steering wheel or your spare tire?” As parents we should be asking ourselves, “Is prayer for our children a normal part of our daily lives … or is it something we do only when we feel helpless?”

The truth is, we can never pray enough. We need power from God to do all He’s called us to do, and so do our children. In addition, we are raising our children in a world with values contrary to our own—a world that seeks to attack and destroy our children. And so much of the attack is out of our control. We can’t defend them against all of these attacks, but we can always pray!




Baked Lasagna







This is a favorite Lasagna of our family. If you cook your meat a day or two ahead then this recipe takes a lot less time.



3 pounds lean ground beef

1 t of garlic powder

1 T & 1 t parsley flakes

1 T & 1 t basil

1 t salt

2 cans of diced tomatoes

2 (6 oz.) tomato paste

10 Lasagna noodles

1 (12 oz.) Small curd cottage cheese

2 beaten eggs

1 t salt

1/2 t pepper

2 T  Parsley flakes

1/2 cup Parmesan cheese

2 Packages  (8 oz.) Mozzarella Cheese


Brown meat slowly. Add next six ingredients to meat. Simmer uncovered until thick about 30 minutes.

Stirring occasionally. Cook noodles until tender; drain; rinse in cold water

Combine next five ingredients with cottage cheese. Place 1/2 of noodles in 13x9x2 baking dish.

Spread half cheese mixture over noodles. Add half mozzarella and half meat mixture. Repeat layers

Bake 350 for 30 minutes



What to Do When Your Adult Children Don’t Like You by Linda Bernstein

Angry mother and daughter

Psychologist Joshua Coleman, Ph.D., the author of When Parents Hurt and co-chair of the Council on Contemporary Families, observes that it’s common for boomers to be anxious about relationships with their grown children.

Often our offspring suddenly appear distant or not eager for our company, he says. We feel slighted; we consult therapists and counselors and discuss our state of mind on social media sites.

Our concerns, however, can be a tempest in a teapot. Parents may be making a big deal over what’s really a normal developmental stage. “Sometimes a kid is just sending the message, ‘I do like you, but I don’t want to be attached like glue,’” Coleman says. “A parent shouldn’t interpret that as a sign of enmity.”

Kathy McCoy, Ph.D., author of Making Peace With Your Adult Children, agrees. Perceived indifference is usually just an adult child’s act of independence. “Young adults may be caught up in their own lives and not in touch as much as a parent may wish,” she says.

7 Tips for Staying Close

So how can parents manage to stay close to grown children who need space? And how do we avoid the unnecessary heartache that comes from misinterpreting their vibes? McCoy and Coleman offer seven practical tips:

1. Don’t expect your child to be your confidant. While your friends may be all ears for a graphic description of your latest mammogram or blow-by-blow recount of a fight with your boss, your children will probably not be as riveted.

Coleman says they don’t want to hear about such personal things — but not because they’re self-centered. “A parent/child relationship is pretty intense,” she says, “and as they get older, the natural tendency is to want to separate and gain some distance.”

2. Don’t assume your child always wants to chat or text. Response time almost always gets longer as kids get older, experts agree. Cissy Blank says that when her son, Jason, lived at home, he returned calls and messages quickly. But that changed when he went away to college. So she tacked a copy of his schedule to the fridge and was careful never to call during class, trying to be considerate. Yet sometimes it still took Jason days to get back to her.

“When he came home one weekend, he told me he had a lot going on and that we should assume he was okay unless we heard otherwise. It hurt,” Cissy says, “but it was true.”

“Not texting daily doesn’t mean your kids don’t like you,” McCoy says. “What’s happening to them is much more pressing and vivid than what’s going on with their parents.”




Love Your Husband by Loving Your Mother-in-Law By Dr. Juli Slattery



Have you ever considered that another woman may be vying for your husband’s love and attention? That other woman is your mother-in-law. And the triangle of son, mother and daughter-in-law can often initiate a delicate dance for everyone involved.

One day I asked my husband, “How can I improve as a wife?” His response surprised me. He simply said, “You could do more to reach out to my parents.” I had never thought of my role as a daughter-in-law as part of my expression of love to my husband. The truth is that family relationships are interconnected, so my rapport with my mother-in-law directly affects my relationship with my husband.

The apostle Paul wrote: “As far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone” (Romans 12:18). I’m pretty certain that “everyone” includes in-laws, so here are a few tips on how to promote peace:

Let go of the rope. If you’re a wife who feels criticized each time your mother-in-law visits, it’s crucial that you not aggravate the situation. Returning similar assaults on your mother-in-law by finding subtle ways to criticize her cooking, lifestyle choices and marriage only encourage the tug-of-war. In this situation, the right thing to do is to drop your end of the rope. Resist the urge to retaliate. If your mother-in-law is critical of you, it’s often because she feels insecure. Don’t add to that insecurity with your criticism.

Support your husband’s relationship with his mom. A husband and wife need to set appropriate boundaries with their families, particularly during the first few years of marriage. But as you define those boundaries with your husband’s family, be careful not to send them a message to simply “butt out.” Instead, go out of your way to foster a healthy mother-son relationship. Remind your husband to send his mom flowers for her birthday, and encourage him to take her out to lunch.